In a recently released coroner’s report into the drowning death of a Victorian nine-year old, coroner Caitlin English has urged the Victorian Government to make swimming education a compulsory part of the primary school curriculum. She states:


“Whilst there has been a widespread focus on the importance of adult supervision of children around water, a lack of swimming ability among children contributes to an increased risk of drowning,


This is also fuelled by Life Saving Victoria’s 2013 report “Sink or Swim: The state of Victorian primary school children’s swimming ability” which found that Victorian primary school children are lacking vital swimming and water safety skills with “60% of Victorian year 6 students […] unable to swim 50 meters”.


NSW has previously heard a similar call, however, nothing was done at a state government level.


One state government in Australia though has already taken action. The WA “Department of Education meets the cost of instruction at Interm classes for all public primary students and private primary students in rural and remote areas”. They state that “approximately 90% of eligible public primary schools across the state have participated in the program.”


We’d like to hear from all  – “Should our national curriculum include educating all kids how to swim in primary school?


    • Do you think it should be mandatory?
    • Do you think the primary school education curriculum is already too full?
    • Do you think this subject is being used as media fodder for the day and will be dropped quickly?
    • What impact would a change have on already burdened primary school teachers?
    • Is it cost prohibitive?
    • Have you had experiences in this topic?


Have your say in the comments box below and leave your thoughts & knowledge on this area.



      • Life Saving Victoria –
      • WA